These delicious morsels by Sydney chef Luke Nguyen will make a great addition to your barbecue repertoire. While the traditional Vietnamese recipe uses beef, you could easily substitute chicken, pork or even prawn. Serve as an appetiser or entree.
- 400 g minced beef
- 2 lemongrass stems, white part only, finely chopped
- 4 spring onions, white part only, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove , finely chopped
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp finely ground white pepper
- 1 bunch betel leaves
- 200 g cooked rice vermicelli noodles
- 2 tbsp nuoc mam dipping fish sauce
- 1 tsp fried red Asian shallot
- 1 tsp crushed roasted peanuts
- 2 red chillies, sliced
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
In a mixing bowl, combine the beef, lemongrass, spring onions, garlic, salt and pepper. Allow flavors to infuse for at least 15 minutes. Meanwhile, pick the individual betel leaves and wash in cold water. Lay the leaves flat on a cloth to dry.
To form the rolls, lay a large betel leaf (or 2 smaller leaves), shiny side down, on a board with the stem of the leaf pointing towards you. Spoon approximately 1 tablespoon of the beef mixture onto the bottom edge of the leaf. Work it into a sausage shape, then roll the leaf from bottom to top and place the seam flat on your bench to stop the leaf unrolling. Repeat this process until you have used all of the beef. The mixture should make about 20 rolls.
Cook the parcels, seam first, on a char-grill or barbecue hotplate over medium heat, turning to color all over, for about 5 minutes, or until done.
Place the cooked parcels on a bed of vermicelli noodles, and then drizzle with a tablespoon of nuoc mam dipping fish sauce and garnish with fried red shallots, peanuts and chilli.